Seneca, Moral Epistles 14.17-18
“Now you extend your hand for the daily gift! I’ll ply you with a golden one. Since we are talking about gold, take this so that its use and benefit may be more pleasing to you. “The one who enjoys riches the most is the one who least needs them.”
“Tell me who said that” you say. Well, so you’ll know how open-minded I am, this quote honors a different school. It’s from Epicurus or Metrodorus or some other of that ilk. Yet what difference does it make who said it. It speaks to everyone.
Whoever needs wealth, has anxiety about it. But no one enjoys a benefit that brings anxiety–they always want to add something more. As long as they are worried about increasing wealth, they forget how to use it. They take their profits, they wear out the forum, they keep looking to the next month. They become wealth’s caretaker instead of its master. Goodbye.”
Nunc ad cotidianam stipem manum porrigis. Aurea te stipe implebo, et quia facta est auri mentio, accipe quemadmodum usus fructusque eius tibi esse gratior possit. “Is maxime divitiis fruitur, qui minime divitiis indiget.” “Ede,” inquis, “auctorem.” Ut scias quam benigni simus, propositum est aliena laudare; Epicuri est aut Metrodori aut alicuius ex Illa officina. Et quid interest quis dixerit? Omnibus dixit. Qui eget divitiis, timet pro illis. Nemo autem sollicito bono fruitur; adicere illis aliquid studet. Dum de incremento cogitat, oblitus est usus. Rationes accipit, forum conterit, kalendarium versat; fit ex domino procurator. Vale.